Five Surprising Games of E3 2010
E3 may have been an oddity of a show. Nintendo went forth and targeted their hardcore audience with announcements for key franchises such as: Zelda, Kirby, Donkey Kong and even Kid Icarus. On the other hand, Microsoft and Sony catered to the casuals with motion-sensitive technology and titles that are aimed at younger demographics.
Having said that, several games were showcased at E3 2010 that were much more surprising than I had ever imagined. The first of many was THQ’s Red Faction: Armageddon.
Red Faction: Armageddon continues the tradition of a glorious display of destruction by way of the Magnet Gun. Targeting an object and selecting its destination point is all that is needed, no matter what the object is. I never imaged Volition Games to outperform themselves after Guerrilla took everyone by surprise in 2009, but Armageddon in early 2011 is looking to steal a lot of the limelight from action titles when it finally hits store shelves. Who wouldn’t be amazed by tearing a wall right from under the support beams with a quick click of two buttons?
One title that came out of nowhere was Harmonix and MTV Games Dance Central. After the downfall of Dance Dance Revolution, I never thought dancing games would ever become popular again on the Xbox 360 or PlayStation consoles (Just Dance is currently Wii exclusive). But with Dance Central, Harmonix once again is proving that they know the music-rhythm genre as Dance Central is bound to become the next game that everyone buys for their parties. Plus, it should aid in teaching those uninitiated with dancing a thing or two so they aren’t a wallflower at the next wedding or night they go clubbing.
Gamers that are more about sitting at home and creating a world all to themselves will find LittleBigPlanet 2 the game of their dreams. The options may overwhelming on paper, but Media Molecule has taken their time to make sure newcomers aren’t frightened away with simple controls and the ease of creating levels. While I was never blown away by the original, I’m afraid to say that the sequel has my complete attention as it does so much more than I ever imagined.
If you thought Portal’s GlaDOS was charismatic, just you wait until you meet Wheatley. The new AI is as charming and humorous as a computer can come, but that’s not the only reason why Portal 2 is on my watch list. The main reason is the inclusion of a two-player cooperative mode that is both offline and online, so solving puzzles has never sounded more intriguing. Plus, I can’t forget that Portal will finally make its first appearance on the PlayStation 3 as a single entity, so that’s always a benefit to Sony fans.
The last title that needs mentioning is Nexon’s Vindictus – the first free-to-play MMO that has garnered unanimous press interest including mine. The “brutal elegance” is fantastic to see in action, especially since it’s going to be free, a feature that can’t be ignored no matter what the circumstances are. Bringing down gigantic bosses with teammates for not a single penny spent should entice gamers of every age.
There are many titles that going to be excellent upon release, but E3 was so big and spectacular this year that it was difficult to see each and every one of them.